DECLAN RICE can emulate Frank Lampard and become a midfield legend.
west hamFormer London cult youth director Tony Carr brought both stars through the East Londoners’ famed Academy of Football.
and rice‘s former mentor believes the Irons vice-captain is on track to becoming world-class – if he can add goals to his game like Lamps did.
Rice, 23, is ready to make his 28th England performance against Switzerland on Saturday.
And Carr, 71, who has dedicated 43 years of his life to youth development at his beloved Hammers, said: “There are a lot of similarities between them Frank and dec
“Fit, vision, passion, dedication and fitness. And humility. Both have it in abundance.
“The only thing Declan is missing is Frank scoring 20 goals a season.
“But to be a true all-around midfielder, Dec has to bring in at least eight to ten every season.
“He still has a long way to go, but he’s going in the same direction as Frank. It’s a goal to emulate Frank’s achievements and become a legend yourself.”
Carr produced West Ham and England’s “Golden Generation” including Lampard, Rio Ferdinand, Joe Cole, Michael Carrick, Glen Johnson and Jermain Defoe.
The ex-Hammers forward, whose playing career was cut short by a serious fracture of his leg, also signed Rice from Chelsea in 2013 aged 14.
Rice, who has played 183 Hammers games, has gone from strength to strength since Carr left West Ham in 2016.
And he’s the latest of many jewels the Bow-born trainer has placed on the Chadwell Heath conveyor belt.
But when Rice and Lampard were teenagers, Carr had no idea what they would achieve.
He said: “It’s hard to see what players will achieve at 15 or 16.
“You never knew at that age that Frank would become Chelsea’s all-time all-time scorer.
“But when Dec arrived he had some outstanding qualities.
“He was able to pass, didn’t need a lot of touches to see the big picture and had top attitude.
“Dec was always at the forefront and eager to learn.
“But Dec and Frank both had leadership qualities.
“They were never afraid to take the ball, even when they were 2-0 down with the crowd behind them.
“They always wanted the ball and to get involved.
“David Moyes saw that in December and handed him the captaincy of West Ham when Mark Noble isn’t playing.”
Rice has two goals for England and has become the Three Lions’ No. 1 midfielder, ahead of Leeds ace Kalvin Phillips and Liverpool’s Jordan Henderson.
And Carr says it can take as long as Rice wants — now he’s earned the respect of older players.
He added: “England don’t have a better midfielder than Declan. Phillips and Henderson are great, but they’re no better than Dec.
“He has to be one of the first names on Southgate’s list and how long that takes depends on Declan.
“The management and the experienced players respect him, which is huge. Now it’s about how long he keeps his love for the game
Lampard scored 211 goals for Chelsea between 2001 and 2014 – a goals per game ratio of 0.33.
The Everton manager also scored 29 goals in 106 England games.
Rice’s nine in 183 games for West Ham in all competitions gives him a 0.05-per-game ratio, which Carr says needs improvement to become world-class. He said: “He’s an outstanding player.
“But to become world class he needs to score more goals. But he’s on his way.”
-Tony Carr’s autobiography: A Life in Football at West Ham United will be published on April 7th.
https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/football/18046454/west-ham-declan-rice-frank-lampard-tony-carr-exclusive/ ‘A legend in his own right’ – Declan Rice told how he can emulate Frank Lampard from a man who promoted both at West Ham